Arry and Bert (also known as Iron 'Arry and Iron Bert) are two diesel shunters who work at the smelters and scrapyards of the Sodor Ironworks. They first appeared in the Railside Tales episode, Diesel's Steel Gang where they visited Bluthsburg Steelworks with Diesel to help Phoebe and Ralph.
'Arry and Bert are unquestionably devious and scheming. They feel superior to steam engines and, working at the scrap yards, they enjoy the chance to break up engines, or at least make their lives more difficult. Due to their grim task, they have earned a reputation on Sodor as "The Grim Messengers of Doom".
'Arry and Bert also have a tendency to act scheming, slimy, greasy, and oozy. According to their merchandise bios, they wish to scrap Oliver and Stepney, who have both escaped the cutter's torch once before.
However, despite their prejudices, the diesels have co-operated with steam engines on occasions, and when they are in trouble, steam engines often come to the rescue.
Arry and Bert were temporarily brought to Crotoonia for a month-long period to assist with the backlog of deliveries at the Bluthsburg Steelworks. They gave a rude first impression by mocking Thomas first, followed by Ralph getting a "rusty little matchbox on rails for a boss".
They did prove to be of assistance when taking care of work in the yards, but continued to play cruel pranks on the other engines. Pheobe, having enough of their pranks towards the other engines, decided to pay them out by riling them up by ignoring them and sarcastically giving them into their own tricks; Bert trying to spray her with water got himself soaked, and Diesel was bashed by his own force when trying to bump her.
In anger, Diesel orders next morning that the three take a heavy freight train to prove their capabilities. They're sent on an express freight run to Fausten, but ignore warnings of the busy Bluthsburg West Junction and the Troublesome Trucks looking to get their revenge.
As the three entered the junction, they found themselves shoved by the freight cars at a ridiculous speed and are forced into Alayah's freight train, derailing them on impact. Eventually, the breakdown gang gets them onto flatbed trucks to be driven to the works (along with rerailing the derailed wagons), but not before Pheobe teases them for their arrogant attitude; she and Thomas end up hauling their Fausten run themselves.
Shortly after being repaired, the two diesels returned to Sodor.
Arry and Bert are based on BR Class 08 diesel-electric shunters. Over seventy members of this class survive today in preservation, while around 100 remain in service on the national rail network. They were in fact the most successful shunting engines in the world, with 996 of them built. Diesel, Splatter and Dodge are also members of this class.
- The two are not quite identical: Bert has more stubble.
- Bert is the first character in the franchise to share his name with another character, and the second to do so in the television series.
- The 1998 Official Website and Question Time with Sir Topham Hatt called 'Arry and Bert "The Yellow Diesels".
- In merchandising and the official website, the twins are named "Iron 'Arry" and "Iron Bert".
- 'Arry is called "Harry" in Japan.
- 'Arry and Bert's television series models do not have handrails, although some of their merchandise lines do.
- 'Arry and Bert's fifth season models were repainted and constructed into Splatter and Dodge for Thomas and the Magic Railroad.
- One of the models might have been previously used from Diesel hence why he didn't appear in Season 5.
- A model of 'Arry and one of Bert used to be on display in Canada at Nitrogen Studios.
- 'Arry's name was not revealed until merchandising of him was released.
- On 'Arry's trading card, he is depicted with more stubble than Bert, opposite of how they usually are.
- There were a few occasions where they went faster than their basis' top speed.
- 'Arry is the only character whose Mini does not have a classic variant, despite have a DC comics variant.
- 'Arry and Bert's liveries might've been inspired by the NS Class 600's livery of black and yellow in some merchandise, even though the NS Class 600 resembles a British Rail Class 11 more than a British Rail Class 08, 'Arry and Bert's basis.